Prof De Vries talks to ecancertv at the 9th European Breast Cancer Conference (EBCC) about how PET scans and other imaging techniques can be harnessed more effectively in the diagnostic process.
De Vries argues that PET scans could be used more readily at an earlier stage in order to visually ascertain the uptake, if any, of tracers into different parts of tumour legions. She argues that because such monitoring would prevent the wasting of money on ineffective courses of treatment, such steps should not be dismissed on financial grounds.
Whilst some factors such as oestrogen receptors may be important in breast cancer, not all tumours will respond to anti-hormonal treatment in the same way and may require chemotherapy - such differences could be better detected with enhanced imaging.
Though such changes in imaging techniques and administration require more trials before they can be applied, she is confident that a more personalised approach to cancer treatment with a more effective use of data imaging will become possible in the future, reducing the need for more invasive treatment.